The latest publication from Hamburg-based desk research company yStats.com titled “South Africa B2C E-Commerce Market 2022” shares insights into the B2C E-Commerce market development, latest trends, forecasts in the country, including the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The publication reveals that the top three drivers of online shopping in South Africa in 2020 were more convenience, the COVID-19 pandemic and shorter waiting period/time saving.
The B2C E-Commerce market in South Africa more than doubled between 2018 and 2020
COVID-19 brought marked changes in retail in South Africa, namely, with the decline in the brick-and-mortar market and the pandemic-associated lockdown, the B2C E-Commerce market increased by over 60% between 2019 and 2020. Moreover, online sales are projected to hold about a twentieth of total retail sales by 2022, which is almost a double growth of share from 2020. Along with this, a nearly 10 p.p. increase in the online shopper penetration was witnessed in the country between 2019 and 2020. Among the top reasons for such an enhanced preference in purchasing items online were convenience, the occurrence of pandemic-related restrictions, and the short waiting period/time efficiency, as of a November 2020 survey.
The dominating online retailer in South Africa saw an over 40% growth in online sales over the first half of 2020
South African online retailers dominated when it came to choosing an online shopping platform in 2020. Among the most commonly visited were Takealot.com and Gumtree.co.za. The leading online retailer in the country witnessed a surge of over 40% y-o-y in its online sales over the first six months of 2020 due to the accelerated online shopping behavior. Moreover, several other retailers seeing the shift in consumer behavior and the opportunities in the E-Commerce market decided to adopt digitization. Namely, considerable market players planned to invest in the growth strategy in 2021, as well as, in strengthening their presence in the market. Other than that, one of the giant online global retailers operating in South Africa entered into a partnership with the South African Post Office in order to provide its customers more efficient and convenient delivery service, as of 2021.
Cross-border online shopping was led by Millennials and Generation X in South Africa in 2020
Although South Africa mostly makes online purchases from local online retailers, cross-border online shopping is also well developed in the country. Especially, this shopping pattern is common among the Millennials and Generation X, trailed by Generation Z. Furthermore, the markets online shoppers in South Africa purchased from the most frequently were China, the United States and the United Kingdom, as per an October 2020 survey.